People in Tennessee who struggle to stay on top of their debt know how stressful this situation can be. Regardless of the reasons that contribute to a person’s inability to pay bills and other debts, there should be a way to get help and be able to start over. For many consumers in the United States, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy may offer this chance. For others, however, they may not even be able to afford a bankruptcy, precluding them from getting the very help they need.

ProPublica reported recently that the problem of affording bankruptcy has come to the forefront of some recommendations made by the American Bankruptcy Institute. The last time major reforms were instituted to the bankruptcy laws in the U.S. was in 2005, some 14 years ago. Some believe that the changes made at that time hurt people in low income brackets. Now, the ABI is trying to push changes forward that would provide the ability for more people to take advantage of debt relief via bankruptcy.

The recommendations made by the ABI also focus on expanding the types of debt that may be able to be included as part of a bankruptcy. One example is student loan debt, which today is very hard to have approved as part of a bankruptcy plan.

Fundamental changes to the bankruptcy laws may be needed if other recommendations are heeded that would allow debtors to pay for their bankruptcies over the span of time instead of completely up front before a plan begins.